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Biology class studies pond life

DCHS Journalism

Duane Dorshorst’s Biology II class has been studying pond life. Recently, the class went to Carl Larson’s pond, which is located west of town, and gathered materials to begin their studies.

 

“The purpose of this trip was to give the Biology II students real-life field experience and to survey a pond to gauge its health to where a report can be given to the pond owner,” said Mr. Dorshorst.

 

The class, which consists of juniors and seniors, tested the chemical composition of the pond water and observed both microorganisms and macroorganisms. Some examples of what they tested for include the levels of carbon dioxide, the alkalinity of the water, and the level of dissolved oxygen.

 

Before going to the pond, the students were given a partner, and each group had a specific task that they were assigned to do. Drew Juenemann and Clayton Carter were in charge of collecting the pond water. They took a boat out to the middle of the pond and collected water samples from two different depths.

 

Gabe Peter did the dissolved oxygen sampling by himself because his partner was playing in a junior varsity football game that day.

 

“I thoroughly enjoyed the process of collecting water to find the quantity of dissolved oxygen it contained,” said Gabe.

 

Alyssa Van Vleet and Cindy Sheaffer took three temperatures of the water with each one being a different distance from the shore.

 

Amy Wentz and Sage Lohoefener were put in charge of collecting macroorganisms and microorganisms. They collected things like snails, leeches and water striders.

 

The group collecting the shoreline insects were Cory Wurm and McKenna Fortin. Anna Carter and Kara Haselhorst collected plants from the shore, which included cattails, duckweed and white rushes.

             

“I liked collecting different organisms and looking at them under our new microscope,” said Kara. The class received a new microscope this year that has a digital screen to take pictures of the slides.

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